“The Quest for Solutions to Poverty” guest lecture with ANIRUDH KRISHNA

Thursday, October 27 / 3:30 pm

HBL – Class of 1947 Room

“One Illness Away and the Quest for Solutions to Poverty”

Co-sponsored by India Studies and Asian/Asian American Studies Institute

Open to the Public


ANIRUDH KRISHNA is Edgar T. Thompson Professor of Public Policy in the Sanford School of Public Policy and Political Science at Duke University and an Affiliate of Duke Global Health Institute. His research investigates how poor communities and individuals in developing countries cope with the structural and personal constraints that result in poverty and powerlessness. In One Illness Away: Why People Become Poor and How they Escape Poverty (Oxford University Press, 2010), he examines poverty dynamics at the household level, tracking movements into and out of poverty of over 35,000 households in 400 communities abroad (India, Kenya, Uganda, Peru) and North Carolina, USA.

“You have to go out there, work within poor communities for a while … There is not and will never be any magic pill.”

Prof. Krishna has published more than 40 journal articles and book chapters. Other books include Poverty, Participation and Democracy: A Global Perspective (Cambridge University Press, 2008); Active Social Capital: Tracing the Roots of Development and Democracy (Columbia University Press, 2002); and Changing Policy and Practice from Below: Community Experiences in Poverty Reduction (United Nations Press, 2000), to name a few. Before turning to academia, Krishna worked for 14 years in the Indian Administrative Service, where he managed diverse initiatives related to rural and urban development. He earned a Ph.D. in government from Cornell University and a master’s in economics from the Delhi School of Economics.

In a lifetime devoted to the quest to understand the roots of poverty, Krishna hopes young people will be inspired to find viable and humanistic solutions. “You have to go out there, work within poor communities for a while, identify people’s strengths and shortcomings, available and missing resources, find the most important gaps in people’s lives and help plug these gaps,” he said in an article profiling his work. “There is not and will never be any magic pill.”